On Ignorance and Offense (includes FREE Bonus Discussion of Infertility!)

Patricia’s excellent series of posts about her experiences with her daughter Mattea over at T&S have got me thinking again about ignorance and offense. I don’t want to presume to compare Patricia’s experiences (which she rightly terms “unbelievable”) with my own, but I suspect all of us have experienced the hurt and frustration of blithely presumptuous, well-meaning drive-by comments on our lives, sometimes in church settings, sometimes from fallible church leaders. I imagine all of us have endured remarks that stick in our craws that we struggle to forgive and to eject from our souls. To start this post off I’ll reflect on a few such remarks in my own life. Then I’ll try to put those remarks in some sort of meaningful context. Read More

Can Women Be Exalted?

One of the questions which came up in my post last fall about my reservations concerning the doctrine of Heavenly Mother was that of female exaltation more generally. It’s an issue that’s been at the back of my mind ever since. The discussion on my recent poll about the Celestial Kingdom inspired me to re-visit the topic, and attempt to sort out what thoughts on the subject I have thus far. Read More

God’s Ways Are Not Our Ways

This post was inspired by the CK debate happening here.

I’ll confess that I find a certain amount of comfort in the idea that God is in some ways a different kind of being than we are. Humans, for all their beauty, are kind of messed up sometimes, and I love the idea that there is a being out there who is perfect and “good” and who doesn’t have the same kind of imperfections as the rest of us. I also love scriptures such as Moses 7:33–the moment when Enoch asks God why he weeps, He responds, “And unto thy brethren have I said, and also given commandment, that they should love one another, and that they should choose me, their Father; but behold, they are without affection, and they hate their own blood.” The idea that there is a perfectly loving and good being who weeps at the cruelty that we inflict on one another appeals to me. Read More

Something Different in the First Presidency Letter?

Yesterday a letter from the First Presidency was read in my ward’s sacrament meeting. It sounded like the standard letter that’s sent every so often asking members to please not write to Salt Lake about our concerns but instead to talk to our bishops or branch presidents.

But at the end I thought I heard something different from what these letters usually sound like. There was a bit where I think they said if you have a question or concern that your stake/district/mission president agrees might be helpful to bring up to the general leadership of the Church, your president can write about it to them on your behalf. Read More

Do You Want to Go to the Celestial Kingdom?


Do you want to go to the Celestial Kingdom?
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I have to admit that I’ve never been all that enthusiastic about the Celestial Kingdom. As a kid, I think I imagined it being like church all the time–not exactly an inspirational thought. And I find the scriptural descriptions of it to be rather off-putting. Streets of gold? Glory, thrones, and dominions? If a sign-up sheet describing a field trip to such a locale came around Relief Society, I’d probably decline. Read More

When Objects Attack!: Struggling with Domesticity

When I’m living on my own, my house is very often a disaster. I only have a limited amount of time and energy, and for me, making sure that I fulfill my teaching and other life responsibilities is more important than whether or not my house is in order. No one except my fiance and family is allowed to visit my house, and I go through cycles of feeling bad or guilty about truly how much of a disaster my house can be at times (I generally cycle from mildly remorseful to downright mortified).

But this is not (entirely) a post about my housecleaning guilt. Read More

The Challenge of Finishing Posts

Those who read ZD regularly have doubtless noticed that we’re not always the best at consistently publishing new material. This is probably due to a number of life factors, such as family, work, and academic obligations, or the need to watch entire seasons of television shows from Netflix. But whatever else may lie behind our periodic post droughts, the problem does not seem to be a lack of ideas. The following is a recent screenshot (posted with the permission of my co-bloggers) of the ZD queue: Read More

World Autism Day

When it rains, it pours. I’d just like to apologize to my fellow bloggers for putting up a third post today, and encourage you to scroll down and read their wonderful posts as well. 🙂

Today, April 2, is the first world autism awareness day. Many people are doing walks or other fundraisers for autism, and many news organizations are taking part by telling stories of autism and discussing what autism really is and means. I, of course, decided to celebrate world autism awareness day by blogging about it. Well, really, I celebrated world autism day by going to an ob appointment, trying to get my drivers license switched, trying to get poop out of the carpet, cleaning up a lot of throw-up, and going to cub scouts. But none of that has anything to do with autism, so I decided I better at least blog about it before the day was over. Read More

Please Don’t Feed the Snoofs: An Anti-Paternalistic Screed

A couple of years ago, in the middle of an intense, protracted, hilarity-inflected conversation, my sister Kiskilili invented the term “snoof” to designate the imaginary beings sometimes posited mid-argument to bolster the claim that ________* is harmful. The snoof-positer isn’t herself harmed by ________. She’s too intelligent, too intellectually sophisticated to be hurt by ________ personally. But she just knows there are snoofs out there–hordes of interchangeably childlike people who aren’t quite as bright or worldly-wise as she is. These poor snoofs are earnest, blank souls, liable to be utterly confounded by the first deviation from the sacred orthodoxy of ________ they encounter. Read More

Renouncing the Philosophies of Women, Mingled With Scripture

We at ZD are pleased to announce that we’ve made a surprising and delightful discovery: our radiant inner femininity is a true blessing to the world, and, in light of this ephiphany, we’ve begun embracing our divine gender roles in earnest. We’ve long felt there was something sadly lacking in our lives, and we’ve found it in the most surpising of places: patriarchal authority. We feel strongly (and the men in our lives concur) that there’s no more reason to worry our pretty little heads over things of the world, so the single among us are moving back in with our fathers where we can hone our skills as full-time homemakers and practice submitting to male jurisdiction, “learn[ing] in silence with all subjection,” while the wives on our site have committed themselves to renewed effort in surrendering to the presiding wills of our husbands. Read More